COLUMBIA, S.C. (USC) -- University of South Carolina sophomore defensive end Jadeveon Clowney has been selected one of the "Seven Blocks of Granite" and, accordingly, a semifinalist for the 43rd Rotary Lombardi Award, the Rotary Club of Houston announced today. The Rotary Lombardi Award is given to the nation's top college lineman or linebacker each year.
Clowney, a 6-6, 256-pounder from Rock Hill, S.C., has been named to the 2012 Midseason All-America first team by both Phil Steele and Sporting News. Through nine games this season, Clowney has 40 tackles, including 15.0 tackles for loss and 8.5 sacks. He is a two-time SEC Defensive Lineman of the Week recipient.
Two-thirds of the way through his second season donning the Garnet & Black, Clowney already ranks sixth in school history with 16.5 sacks and in a tie for 10th in career tackles for loss with 27.0.
The "Seven Blocks of Granite" was the immortal nickname given to Fordham University's famous offensive lines of the 1930s, of which Vince Lombardi was a 1936 member. The semi-finalists for the Rotary Lombardi Award are similarly dubbed the seven blocks of granite. The other "Blocks of Granite" are Arthur Brown, Kansas State; Barrett Jones, Alabama; Jarvis Jones, Georgia; Damontre Moore, Texas A&M; Sam Montgomery, LSU; and Manti Te'o, Notre Dame. Five of seven players are from the SEC.
The Rotary Lombardi Award committee will announce the four finalists on November 17, 2012.
Earlier this week, Clowney was named a semifinalist for the 18th Chuck Bednarik Award presented by Cracker Barrel, which goes to the Outstanding Defensive Player of the Year as selected by the Maxwell Football Club National Selection Committee.